Indie tile-match games normally feature a unique twist in order to stand out among well known competition. Aenigma Os by Akies Games tries to deliver on this expectation - the problem is, it's nothing we haven't already seen before.
After selecting from one of the many game modes, you are presented with a grid filled with colourful shapes where you are required to match up lines of the same shape to gain points. The minimum required number to create a line is three of the same shape in a column or row; the limit extends to the borders of the grid. These lines can also include other shapes, but not too many. Provided there is a certain number of a particular shape per line, this is sufficient.
It's hard to appreciate the amount of modes that have been included. In each one, the common similarity is that scores must be met within certain time frames. One noticeably different option is the puzzle mode, which requires problem-solving within a certain amount of moves. Other than this, there is nothing surprising.
As routine as Aenigma Os is as a tile-match game, the positive news is it's at least functional and easy to play. The Wii U GamePad's stylus and touch screen makes it easy to create lines. Unfortunately, the sense of momentum in each session seems sporadic at best. The grid will go from featuring countless amounts of shapes of the same colour in one location and then offering near impossible matches. Like other games in this genre, if the player is struggling to find a match shapes will begin to glow to provide a hint.
Oddly, the Wii U GamePad is the only way to play this game, unless the alternative is deviously hidden. And this isn't just in terms of the control options. The controller acts as the primary screen for the game; the television screen features a screensaver of the developer's logo - no more, no less. This raises questions as to why the game has even been published on the Wii U. Aenigma Os appears to be another one of those budget titles that hopes to draw the player in for a quick game or two while they're watching a show on the television. Instead, it mostly seems like a lazy decision on the developer's part when the game doesn't even bother to make use of the television, or at the very least provide an option to play the game on the big screen.
Due to this design choice, the two player mode only uses the one controller (the GamePad) as you take turns, one at a time, to see who can create the most lines and earn the highest score. There unfortunately is no simultaneous multiplayer option. Other extras of this title include offline leaderboards, and achievements disguised as "challenges" in an attempt to prolong the experience.
The game is supported by serene visuals. As you progress through the campaign mode, basic backgrounds such as scenic beaches and forests are on display. The game appears to include just a handful of songs, however. One is reminiscent of certain other puzzle games, but not half as classy. Another has a creepy voice talking over the top of a track.
Aenigma Os operates as one would expect a tile-matching game to, but realistically does nothing to set itself apart from the pack. There are many other games available elsewhere that offer this type of experience, and are not half as generic. While there is plenty of content on offer, it should have been condensed into a couple of modes due to the common links between each one. This isn't a game that grows on you over time, and it's hard to respect the developer's decision to not allow the game to be played on the television screen - not to mention the questionable design choices of the two player mode.